44. Weakness In Motherhood - Laura Smith
April 29, 2022
Hi there. So last week we chatted about feeling like a failure and the list of hard demands. We feel as mothers and we left the episode with the challenge of reflecting on what's going on for us in those moments of big feelings of weakness and failure. we were considering the lies that we might be believing in those moments, then reframing to consider what truth do we need to remind ourselves of.
So I'm wondering, how did that go for you? Did you notice anything happening? What did you learn about yourself or God in those big moments? I noticed how much I strove for perfection to keep my house perfect, to be the perfect and supportive wife to be a perfect mom. Lots of my big feelings came from when I was trying so hard to be perfect, but wasn't measuring up to my own standard of rightness.
I also notice doesn't it. Culture tell us that we should be and can be perfect, that we are women who can have it all the career, the family, the holidays, the lifestyle. Everything you could dream of and gone to the days of the magazine each month, showing the ideal, our feeds, the refreshed by the minute and full of influences who are showing us how they are killing it at life.
Using literal augmented reality to make their walls whiter and faces flawless, but it sends the message over and over again that you can be like them too. And then you look up and you see the hand prints all over your walls and a face full of wrinkles and pimples and world. Jeez. The hard thing is high where you want to be.
They're perfect or don't we, cause it looks pretty appealing. And at the heart of it, we want the good life. We want comfort and happiness and all the things that we're told we can have. And we love our family. We want to give them the best and mama, oh, I see how hard you're working to do that too.
I know that you bust your butt to please everyone. And I know how much it costs you in. I know you have those teas that slipped down your face after hard school drop-off and I see you up late cleaning. So the house runs smoothly in the morning. And I see you use your rest time to cook that meal that your husband loves.
And I see your yarns from staying up too late to do youth group runs. And I see your shaking hands as you call in sick to care for your child, disappointing your boss again. And I say you're missing out on new jeans because the budget's tight and your daughter needs soccer shoes. And I say, you step on the scales and wonder how on earth you'll find the time or energy to do something about it.
I see you tired on the couch rating. One more chapter of that parenting book, because you have no idea what you're doing. Let's say, you know you, because I am you. And I wonder, where is this old stemming from? There is a beautiful part of it, right? A beautiful picture of a mum laying down her life for her family.
But I wonder how much of it is that we are striving to be servant hearted or is it that expectation thing? Again, the fear that we're not going to meet the standard put on us and that we put on ourselves. So I do think some of those things, yes, they're good. They're out of love. Keep doing it. Keep serving hard, keep choosing others over you.
But I do wonder, is there something underneath everything that we're working for, that isn't seven hearted and being faithful with what we've been given?
And I think as Christian women, we have this added element of wanting to be that ideal Christian woman. We want to keep serving and loving those around us. We want to model Jesus. We want those in our lives to love him like we do, and we want to raise Christian kids and we want them to love Jesus.
And we want them to be in heaven with us forever, and we want to serve God and we want to please him. And we want to thank him for what he's done for us. And we want to live the way he's asked us to live. But somewhere along the way, something seems to happen where our initial motives of love and following Jesus and being servant hearted do change course.
And this desire to be perfect or to do everything right, or to do what we think is best creeps in. And so much of this conversation reminds me of that two ways to live analogy. Have you heard it? It's a way of explaining the gospel with a bunch of boxes and drawings, but the gist of it is this God created the world.
He rolled it and it was good. We reject God's rule and choose to live with ourselves in control. It goes on to explain how God wouldn't let it be like that forever that he sent Jesus who took our sin on himself. And he's the ruler. And we're left with a choice, submit to Jesus as our king, or go our own way and face the consequences that come with it.
And we want these things so badly, but we end up doing what we did in the garden and we choose to wear the crown and do it our way. Because I think somewhere along the way, our focus becomes what we thinks wise, what we think is most important for our family to work the best function best. And what we think is the best, but really is that how God says it would be because what has he called us?
What should we be striving for perfection? No faithfulness obedience to Christ. We are to abandon our self-reliance and abandon our own efforts. It's to please God, to earn salvation. We are called to complete. I really trust in Jesus and rely on him alone. And it's his continuing attitude of believing in Jesus, turning from our own attempts, our own resources and committing ourselves to God's plan and his ways.
And you might interject here and say, I know this, Laura, I know I can't earn my salvation. I'm not doing that. It's only because of Jesus that I'm going to heaven. And I agree. I know there's nothing we can do to earn our salvation, but I wonder how often are we actually abandoning trust in ourselves? How often are we casting ourselves unreservedly on the mercy of God.
And how often are we actually, depending on the power of the holy spirit for our daily strength, faith implies complete reliance on God and fully obedience to him. How are we going at this? I mean, I'd be the first person to put my hand up and wave it around and say, I trust God. But all it takes is a little bit of hardness or a little bit of running late and you know, a little bit of something not going the way I thought it should go, or a hint of suffering in that arm that I have waving in the air goes still and starts to lower toward my aim and casually slipped down to my thigh.
Hoping no one would notice because trusting God can be really hard. He's not always obvious. It's not always obvious that he has his hand in it. What if things don't go the way I want them to go trusting God is something that I think every Christian will ebb and flow in how well they do often. It's easiest to trust him when life is going well.
And I think it's, God's kindness to give us hard times because it reveals the areas in our life where we are dependent on ourselves and our own wisdom and our own strength and what we clean to and idolize most. And it's in those hard times that reveal what our hearts are cleaning to and encourage us to turn and seek and trust God.
I thought I'd finished by reading a few Bible verses about trusting God, and I've put them up on the website again. And why don't you print them off and have a go memorizing them this week. I fill your mind with these verses in heart, that the truth of God's word comes to you faster. Next time you find yourself trusting in yourself and your own strength.
Now, as I read these, I've taken out the references, but they are on the website. So make sure you look them up. I have just got a bunch of verses and I'm reading them in a chunk. Surely God is my salvation. I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord himself is my strength and my defense.
He has become my salvation. So do not fear for, I am with you. Do not be dismayed for, I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will uphold you with my writer's hand. Have I not commanded you be strong and courageous do not be afraid. Do not be discouraged for the Lord. Your God will be with you wherever you go.
My God will meet all your needs. According to the riches of his glory in Christ. Jesus, those of you who know your name trust in you for you. Lord have never forsaken those who seek. Let the morning bring word of your unfailing. Love for, I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go for, to you. I entrust my life.
God is our refuge and strength and ever present help in times of trouble. Therefore, we will not fear though, the earth give way and the mountains fall in the heart of the sea trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean, not on your own understand. In all your ways, submit to him and he will make your path straight.
But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when the heat comes. Its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. May the God of all hope, fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the holy spirit.